German U17 World Cup Success: Heart, Passion, and Basics

2023-11-24 14:58:00

If you believe Christian Wück, it was the simple things that led the German U17 juniors to the World Cup semi-finals in Indonesia: “If we keep a clean sheet at the back and continue to fight so self-sacrificingly, then we will win the game,” said the DFB coach announced during the half-time break of the quarter-final thriller against Spain.

“And that’s exactly how it happened,” Wück summed up happily after the hard-fought 1-0 (0-0). That’s just “what defines the Germans,” he added.

Even “chief critic” Dietmar Hamann saw it this way: “It was football with heart and passion,” wrote the ex-national player and “Sky” expert after the game in praise of X. Argentina will be waiting in the semi-finals next Tuesday the DFB team.

These are sentences that sound unreal in German football these days.

U17 outshines failures of the senior national team

The reality at major tournaments has recently meant that DFB teams have been eliminated from the preliminary rounds rather than being among the best in the world. While national coach Julian Nagelsmann is considering relying more on workers and less on talent in the future after the embarrassing performances of the senior national team, Wück’s team is achieving one success after another thanks to the so-called “basics”.

The German selection followed up the European Championship title in Hungary in the summer with another exciting performance at the finals in Southeast Asia. The team has won everything so far, sometimes with great goals and – like against Spain – sometimes with a great fight. Above all, the Wück team is mercilessly efficient.

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BVB youngster Brunner becomes the match winner

On the contrary: Brunner, of all people, scored the decisive penalty against Spain (64′), which he also took himself. In addition, a united – and determined – collective worked on defense against highly technically gifted Spaniards.

After the game, captain Noah Darvich spoke of a “deserved victory”, despite horrendous statistics of only 24 percent ball possession and 5 to 22 shots on goal. It looks like the journey for the U17 juniors could continue for a long time.

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